8th District of Massachusetts Congressman Stephen F. Lynch. David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe
At the end of April, congressman Stephen F. Lynch, who is representing the 8th District of Massachusetts, introduced the “Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) Enhancement and Transparency Act” (H.R. 6607). The bill comes as a reaction to the lack of success of the SNS to supply protection gear, ventilators, and other crucial equipment throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rep. Lynch explained the essence of the problem:
“Throughout the COVID-19 crisis we have watched health care providers and centers pushed to their breaking points as they risk their lives to provide vital care to their communities.”
The act calls for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to establish, and provide grants to states, which implement the National Emergency Biodefense Network, in accordance with the National Biodefense Science Board.
“The Network” will be developed through private blockchain technology and will track and monitor the inventory of supplies such as protective equipment, medical devices, and drugs.
Rep. Lynch brought more light on the matter:
“Many of these providers have been forced to work without sufficient equipment and supplies. Unfortunately, when states have sought help from the SNS, their requests have gone unanswered. We depend on the SNS to supplement state reserves of biodefense supplies and equipment and H.R. 6607 will ensure the readiness of the SNS to respond to future crises. By adopting a private blockchain system we can verify the status of our biodefense capacity in real-time which will allow us to be better prepared.”
In addition, the legislation will also arrange funding for the formation of state repositories and the development of state-based blockchain nodes for monitoring purposes.